Sunday 2.10.2019 New York Times Digest

1. America’s War of Stories

“We are in the midst of another great war, one that encompasses all of the others: a war of stories.”

2. Why Won’t Blackface Go Away?

“It has been a part of American popular culture since what we recognize as popular culture emerged — roughly round 1832, when Thomas Dartmouth Rice, in blackface, performed his song ‘Jump Jim Crow’ to thunderous applause at the Bowery Theatre in New York.”

3. Day Care for All

“Free public college, health care for all, a living wage: These are all important causes that will improve life for millions. But there’s another proposal that belongs on the progressive to-do list: universal affordable high-quality child care. In fact, I would put it ahead of free public college: It would help more people and do more to change society for the better.”

4. The Real Mommy War Is Against the State

“The United States has the least generous benefits, the lowest public commitment to caregiving, one of the highest wage gaps between employed men and women, and among the highest maternal and child poverty rates of any Western industrialized nation.”

5. Why Girls Beat Boys at School and Lose to Them at the Office

“What if school is a confidence factory for our sons, but only a competence factory for our daughters?”

6. Our Brains Aren’t Designed to Handle the Trump Era

“He told me he suspects that humans during the Trump era are unwittingly re-enacting the rat experiments that James Olds and Peter Milner did in the 1950s, wherein the creatures repeatedly pressed a lever to feel an electric jolt to their reward centers. The poor subjects became such hostages to gratification that they stopped eating, drinking, even having sex. Eventually, they died of exhaustion.”

7. Erykah Badu: Accidental Spirit Guide

“Those are phases of wokeness, where you are judgmental and you’re strong in your opinion, and you’re learning this new information, and all that’s a part of building your character. As you grow more and more, you begin to eliminate the need to judge others and to crucify others and to compete, to have a word debate. You lose those interests as you grow.”

8. Maria Popova: By the Book

“Literature is the original internet — every allusion, footnote and reference is a hyperlink to another text.”

9. A Sensible Climate Change Solution, Borrowed From Sweden

“No other source or collection of sources of energy, they argue, is positioned to meet these challenges in time. Without growth in nuclear power, replacing fossil fuels with renewables simply decarbonizes the existing supply. It doesn’t deal with the increased demand coming from the developing world.”

10. How to Reject an Online Suitor

“Keep it straightforward.”

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